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Hartselle Enquirer

Grand jury indicts Falkville man in fatal shooting

By Staff Reports

A Morgan County grand jury indicted a Falkville man on a murder charge for allegedly fatally shooting an acquaintance in the face near Falkville in 2021, according to court records.

Richard Odell Clark, 43, is accused of killing Patrick Edward Burkhart, 58, of Falkville, on Jan. 22, 2021.

Clark pleaded not guilty June 3 and waived his arraignment, which was initially set for June 28.

Morgan County District Attorney Scott Anderson said the trial will likely be held in 2023.

“It was one of several murder cases we had in 2021,” Anderson said. “I don’t see any issues with the case at this point.”

Clark’s defense attorney, James Patrick Caver of Hartselle, was not available for comment Friday.

According to an affidavit filed by Morgan County sheriff’s Investigator Chris Price, sheriff’s deputies responded to a shooting on Jan. 22, 2021, at 1202 Alabama 55 E. and, when they arrived, they noticed a man on the ground who appeared to have a gunshot wound to his face. The document said deputies detained multiple people and investigators, upon speaking with witnesses, learned that a fight had broken out in the yard.

One witness said the victim was on top of Clark and the witness pulled the victim off of him. The witness said he saw Clark get up, and a short time after that heard a gunshot. The witness said he was on top of the victim, and Clark shot the victim in the head. The indictment said Clark used a pistol to shoot Burkhart.

The affidavit said that while being questioned, Clark admitted to shooting the victim. The Morgan County Sheriff’s Office said the two men were acquaintances.

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